Tag Archive: John

Massacre In Sin City

https://static.pexels.com/photos/161772/las-vegas-nevada-cities-urban-161772.jpegJohn 3:18-21   “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

Dearly Beloved:  May Gods grace, peace, mercy and love be ever upon you.  Let me start by giving my heart felt condolences to all of the victims of the Las Vegas massacre.  The man who perpetrated that act was obviously very troubled and no doubt plagued by demons.  Evil is ever present awaiting an opportunity to infect us and turn us against each other.  The further away man drifts from God, the easier we are to manipulate.  Even those of us who are saved must maintain constant vigilance.  We have to stay in our bibles and go to church.  The Word is our shield and our guide.  If we stray from the path of light, then we open ourselves up to sin.  Let me tell you that from experience.  Being in prison is very difficult.  There are no words to accurately describe it.  You have to live it in order to understand it.  I have strayed from the path on more than one occasion and each time I have been met with catastrophe.  This is a very unforgiving environment.  You can be beaten or stabbed in the blink of an eye.  It is very difficult to stay on the path.  I struggle.  We all do.  None of us are immune to evil.  Once infected, it will consume us if we do not enlist the help of our LORD to expel it. (more…)

A Letter To The President

https://pixabay.com/en/envelope-letters-leave-shiny-post-392960/Dear Mr. Trump a.k.a. “The Donald”:
May God’s mercy, peace, truth and strength be ingrained on every fiber of your being.  May you seek and find His forgiveness and learn to follow His commandments.  Mr. Trump, I do not hate you nor mean you harm, sir.  I am neither your judge nor your jury.  From the beginning of your presidency, I have prayed for you and gave you the benefit of doubt because you are my president.  I have hoped that you would be a man of integrity and that you would bring justice, strength and prosperity to our great nation and the world.  In the beginning, during your candidacy, I took a hard stance against you.  I thought you to be a hate monger and a liar.  Though you claimed to be my brother in CHRIST, I was hesitant to accept your claim for it appeared to me that you are not in line with Christian values nor our founding principles given and commanded by the LORD our GOD.
Matthew 22:37-40  Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’   On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
But, I could not judge you for the LORD reminded me of John 8:7 – “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”
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The Shadow Of Death

Psalm 23:4  Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”

Dearly Beloved:  May God’s grace, peace, love, joy and will to live be ever upon you.  As many of my loyal readers know, I am currently housed at the max prison here in Massachusetts.  Recently, former New England Patriot, Aaron Hernandez, took his own life.  I never met Aaron.  We were housed in different areas, but his reputation preceded him.  He was a larger than life character with a magnetic personality.  He was well known for his generosity and his faith in God.  He was referred to by those who knew him as “Double A”.  Even though I never met Aaron, his death had a profound affect on me.  Like Aaron, I am serving a life sentence.  Thoughts of ending my own life used to loom in my mind as well.  My love for my children and family kept me sane and helped me to realize how much pain it would cause them.  Most importantly, though, my faith in Jesus has led me to realize that I still have purpose.  God has plans for me.  Still, I can’t help but feel Aaron’s pain.  I can’t help but understand his decision.  I don’t know whether or not Aaron was guilty or innocent.  It is not my place to judge him nor is it right to believe the media hype.  Being a man serving a life sentence for crimes that I did not commit has both humbled me and opened my eyes.  I am no longer so quick to judge.   (more…)

Walk With The Redeemer

https://www.pexels.com/photo/2-people-walking-on-grass-field-in-front-of-mountain-during-sunrise-167914/John 1:29  “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”

Dearly Beloved:  May God’s grace, peace, mercy and redemption be ever upon you.  May you bask in the glory of the Lord for all eternity.

I remember what it was like being unsaved.  That was about four years ago.  Boy, what a confusing time it was.  I remember feeling so cold and lost.  Each day just dragged into the next.  I was always stressed out and worried.  I ran with sinners and lowlifes.  Thus, I was always paranoid that one of them would backstab me or cheat me.  Yes, sir, I remember like it was yesterday.  Often times, I didn’t live day by day, but from one drink to the next.  I remember not having a sense of direction, feeling like I was wandering aimlessly.  I remember the pain.  Lord knows, I was hurting so bad.  The pain was deep and excruciating.  I remember feeling like my only reason for being was to provide for my family and find ways to numb the pain.  I remember chasing false remedies.  I remember grasping at what I thought was a cure, only to find out it was nothing but a deep, dark pit – a vast expanse of nothingness and solitude – a cold dark place where once you were trapped, you felt as though there was no way out.  Every time you tried to escape it, the pit got deeper.  I remember how scary that was.  I remember how hopeless I felt.  I lost faith in everyone and everything – (more…)

Now Is The Time

https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-and-white-sport-fight-boxer-3797/Mark 16:16  He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

Dearly Beloved:  May God’s grace, blessings, love, peace, wisdom, mercy, and most importantly, salvation be ever upon you.  For all of you out there who have not made the most important decision you will ever make – NOW IS THE TIME!!!  It is time to choose JESUS.  You can’t afford to keep stalling and being indecisive.

Let me tell you a story.  When I was a kid, I loved boxing.  I watched it faithfully with my dad.  I always wanted to make my dad proud and I knew how much he loved boxing; so, at the age of twelve, I went to a gym and started training to be a fighter.  I was devoted.  I trained hard.  My trainer started taking me to fights.  He, himself, was a pro fighter at the time.  I trained and sparred for four years until I started to see an ugly truth: boxing is rigged, for the most part.  I am not knocking the greats.  They were indeed truly greats, but what I came to see is that if you yourself were not especially talented, you were little more than a prop for those who are.  You see, in boxing, mediocre fighters are pitted against talent-less fighters in order to boost their ratings and make them look like contenders.  And, when they are ranked high enough, they are then put in the ring with a monster who they stand no chance against.  Bets are placed, insiders who set up the fights make money hand over fist and most of the fans are none the wiser. (more…)

ALL SOULS MATTER !

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John 3:16-17  For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

Dearly Beloved: May God’s peace, love, understanding and mercy flow through you all.
Today is Sunday, June 12th, 2016 and it is a very sad day indeed.  Let me offer my heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims of the Orlando, Florida nightclub massacre.  My prayers are with you, the city of Orlando, the nation, the gay community and the family of the perpetrator.  I condemn the actions of any persons, especially those claiming to be Christian, who spew hate on others based on their sexual preferences or for any reason.  Let me be clear that, as a follower of Christ, I do not agree with or condone homosexuality.  It goes against my Christian principles; however, I cannot judge any human being and I do not love people any less because of their lifestyle choices.  They are still my fellow human beings.
The Bible is clear that ALL SOULS MATTER !
Mark 16:15  And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.”
He didn’t say preach only to heterosexuals.  He didn’t say preach only to whites or people of color.  He said preach to every living creature. (more…)

Me, Myself and I AM

https://www.pexels.com/photo/nature-sky-sunset-man-6550/Exodus 3:14-15
And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”  
Moreover God said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel: ‘The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My memorial to all generations.’

Dearest Brothers and Sisters:  Greetings!  May God’s grace, love, peace, joy and protection be ever upon you all.  Let me start by saying, “Praise God!  Praise God!  Praise God!  Amen and Amen!”  It feels so good to praise Him.  Hallelujah!  I love the Lord so much, for He is all mighty and everlasting.  I am truly blessed to report that after many months of separation (due to my solitary confinement in Maine), I was finally reunited with my two eldest children this week.  I was able to visit with each of them individually for several hours.  God Is Great!  Yes, He Is!  Amen!  I knew from the beginning of my situation when I turned myself in that I would be railroaded.  Thus, my heart was heavy when I was transported from Massachusetts to Maine in 2012.  I remember thinking that I may never see my beloved home state again, for I knew that my color would be a huge factor in my case.  Tears streamed down my face as I pondered the possibility of never returning to my place of birth again.  But, you see, I did not know or trust the Lord then.  I was only just beginning to connect with Him.  Nothing in this or any other world can thwart God when He has a plan.  God meant for me to return home and so here I am.  It is true I am still in chains, but nevertheless, I am home. (more…)

Just One

https://www.pexels.com/photo/church-cathedral-religion-prayer-7302/Dear beloved brothers and sisters,
I went to church services for the very first time at the new facility I am in last night.  It was a very warm and welcoming place. It is ornate and built to be acoustical.  For the first time in nearly four years, I felt a nostalgic connection to a place of worship.  I got the warm and fuzzies as I reconnected with memories from my childhood.  I instantly felt at home.  Church is my very favorite place to be.  There is nothing more pleasant or uplifting than communing with others in the name of the Lord.  As always, the Spirit moved me and I was compelled to speak at the end of service.  You see, I had surveyed the room and found some sad faces and heavy hearts about.  Those looks inspired the kindling of spiritual fire inside of me.  I said, “I know times seem bleak right now, my brothers, but this is not the end for you.  This is only the beginning of a miraculous transformation.  Your incarceration does not have to be negative.  To the contrary, God can use your situation to uplift and inspire others.  That is, if you let Him.”  I saw a glimmer of hope begin to shine in some of their eyes.  I could tell that what I was saying registered in some way with some of them. (more…)

Remember Him, Serve Him, Love Him

https://www.pexels.com/photo/war-chess-59197/John 3:16-18  “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

Dear Beloved Friends,
Greetings, love, peace, joy and blessings to you.  Today is Good Friday (or so they say).  We truly don’t know exactly when Jesus died.  The dates we celebrate Easter on are actually pagan dates.  The reasons why we have an Easter bunny and eggs with color is because these are pagan tradition having to do with fertility.  I make mention of this every year as a reminder because I want you to realize how important it is to give all glory to Jesus and not to fairy tales.  I want you to make sure you are worshiping God and not false pagan idols.  I meditate on what the Lord has done for us every day and I thank Him daily.  We must constantly be aware of His sacrifice for us.  Thank you, Jesus!  Praise your name, Lord!  Amen and Amen!

I am adapting well to my new surroundings.  I am doing my best to spread the Gospel.  I have a new Bible study partner named Nick.  He is such a broken man – just the kind the Lord loves to grab hold of and transform.  We sat down to play a game of chess with one another and I knew right away that the Lord sent him to me.  Now, I’m no grand-master by any means, but I can play a decent game.  Nick and I chatted about his history.  He told me that he wants to change his life, but he doesn’t know how.   (more…)

Take Jesus With You Everywhere You Go

etsy_hand-lettered-vintage-globe-matthewMatthew 28:19-20  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

Dear Friends,  May God’s peace, love and joy be ever upon you.  I have been moved to Massachusetts.  I already miss my brothers and sisters in Christ from Maine.  My work for the Lord in Maine is done for now.  The Lord achieved victory there and now I must move on to do His work wherever He calls me.  It is very strange to be in new surroundings.  After 3+ years in Maine, it is a bit of a culture shock.  I am finally out of segregation.  Though solitary confinement wore on me some, it also gave me a chance to draw nearer to the Lord.  I learned to trust in Him with all of my heart and soul.  It was Jesus who sustained me through it all.  He strengthened me and taught me never to give up.  He gave me peace and prepared me to face the upcoming battles ahead.  Right now, I am in a classification prison, but I will soon be sent to a prison which is three times the size of Maine State Prison.  After seven and a half months of solitary, it is very strange to be out of my cell and around so many people.  The cell block I am in houses 50 men.  It is not easy to adjust.  In many ways, I am still in solitude as I have found it more comforting to be alone presently.  There is a church service tonight and I am looking forward to communing with other Christians.  Unlike the persecution I faced at M.S.P., here in Massachusetts, church is a sacred institution and is a mandatory part of all prisons.  They would never have banned my pastor from seeing me, nor would they have punished me for writing about Jesus on this site.  I am sure, though, that I will surely face other forms of persecution.  I fear not – for the Lord is with me.  He has plans for me that no one can stop – for who can defeat the Lord?  When I entered the transport van that brought me here, the radio was on and as we exited through the gates of Maine State Prison, the song “We Are The Champions” was playing.  I could not help but smile.  It was so fitting.  I pointed my shackled hands toward the sky and said, “Yes, we are the champions, Lord, by your grace alone Father, by your grace alone.”  Jesus once again reminded me that He is with me and that I am doing His will. (more…)

Believe In The Power Of Prayer

https://www.pexels.com/photo/lights-party-dancing-music-2143/Dear Readers,
Joy, love and blessings to you, my beautiful brothers and sisters.  May the peace of Jesus Christ fill and surround you and may His grace be ever upon you.  Amen!  Let me start by giving you an update on my dearly beloved pastor, friend and brother, Tom Shuford.  As many of you know, Tom went for surgery on 12/30/15 to put a dialysis port into his abdomen.  Tom is suffering from kidney failure and a host of other ailments.  Tom has defied death [only by the grace of God, of course] for over 30 years now.  I am happy to report that once again God has stepped in and spared Tom’s life.  Hallelujah!  Praise Jesus!  The Bible says that “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.” – Luke 18:27.  The Lord does not lie.  Tom is proof of that.  He is a living testament to both the power of God and the power of prayer.  Make no mistake about it folks, our prayers have helped Tom tremendously and continue to do so.  It was the faith of all of us, including Tom, that helped Tom make it through this and live to fight for the Lord another day.  Praise God!  SHOUT HALLELUJAH!  THANK YOU, JESUS!  WE BELIEVE IN YOUR POWER, ALMIGHTY GOD!  Yes, we do.  I thank all of you around the world who have kept our brother in your prayers.  GOD BLESS YOU ALL!  Tom is not totally out of the woods yet.  He faces a lengthy recovery.  So, please continue to pray for brother Tom, knowing that those prayers shall be heard. (more…)

The Power Of Joy And Laughter

https://unsplash.com/photos/yvx7LSZSzeoJames 1:2-3  “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.”

Dear Readers,  When I think of the passage above, I see an even deeper meaning, especially due to my current circumstances.  Now James is telling us that when we suffer for Christ, we should take pleasure in it.  He is explaining that it is wonderful and honorable to suffer on earth for the Lord.  But, I believe there is more to it.

I am now in my fifth month of solitary confinement.  The S.M.U. [Supermax Unit] is divided into sections.  I am housed on what is known as the programs corridor.  There are 14 men altogether on this corridor.  Seven on one side and seven on the other.  Our cells face each other, so we can yell through the cracks of our cell doors and conversate.  Every day, I find a way to make these men laugh. (more…)